If you had braces when you were a teenager, you were ahead of the trends.
That's because apparently braces are a new fashion statement- at least in Thailand, Indonesia and Malayasia they are.
But these "trendy" braces are not real, nor are they being put on by an orthodontist. They are black market braces -- fake metal-and-rubber mouth accessories in a rainbow of colors and designs, including Hello Kitty and Mickey Mouse -- for around $100.
However, fake braces come with real problems. As Oddity Central website states, black market braces can come loose and slip into the throat, or can cause sores on the gums and inside the mouth. Also some of the wires could contain lead.
The website Vice UK writes that fake braces were the cause of death for two teens. A pair of fake braces was blamed for the death of a 17-year-old in the northeast city of Khon Kaen from a thyroid infection, which rapidly progressed to fatal heart failure. Then, in Chonburi, police tied the death of a 14-year-old girl to braces purchased at an illegal open-air stall.
If you are considering getting braces to make a fashion statement, make sure to visit your dentist first.